UFC female bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey had her chance to vent in a Google Hangout, so it’s only fair that her challenger Miesha Tate gets a shot at doing the same. In a recent FoxSports.com Q&A, Tate took the opportunity to fire back at the outspoken Rousey, going as far as calling her rival a “mega bitch.”
Tate explained that their dynamic took an unexpected turn on the show, with Rousey suddenly and without warning becoming much harder to deal with.
“I’ve had people I’ve worked with before that I didn’t get along with or whatever, but never to this extent,” Tate said. “I don’t know what her reasoning was for it, but at one point she just flipped a switch and she just became this mega bitch. For the rest of the season, it was just horrible having to deal with her.”
This happened “probably about a week in,” and according to Tate, it “was all a downhill slope from there.”
Due to her contract obligations, Tate couldn’t provide any specific examples because the season has not aired yet. However, she speculated that it could be because her own mental state changed during the show.
“I’m not going to lie,” Tate said. “I was jealous and I was like, ‘You know what? She’s this and that and didn’t deserve a title shot.’ That was an immature stance at that time in my life, but after the loss it forced me to grow up and be like ‘Hey, you know what? She did deserve that title shot. She won and she’s a talented athlete and look where she’s taken women’s MMA.’ That’s the reality of it. I just had to accept that and try to be appreciative so I can continue being a happy person that I would rather be.”
“I kind of let that be known and I think that she caught wind of it,” she continued. “I think when I walked in the door, we had a different kind of vibe.”
Tate thinks that Rousey’s behavior stems from the fact that Tate is no longer letting herself be emotionally manipulated.
“She puts on this tough girl act. She flips me off, she cusses me out, she does all these things I really think deep down inside because she respects me a lot. She is realizing the first time [we fought] that she was able to get away with that and it bothered me and she was able to emotionally manipulate me. This time it’s not. I think she’s even more aggravated about it and that’s why she’s really escalated,” Tate said.
Tate was also asked to comment on the video that emerged of the TUF season premiere media screening. In it, Tate and UFC president Dana White seemed to be having a good time, while Rousey looked pretty miserable. Tate speculated that this is because Rousey is upset at the way she is portrayed in the show, and that her true character has finally been revealed.
“Ronda has been the ‘cool girl,'” Tate said. “A lot of times the bully in school is the ‘cool person’, but when you grow up and start to realize that’s not cool, people will see the truth. They’ll see why it’s been impossible for me to like Ronda.”
“There’s no way I could possibly like her,” Tate continued. “She’s been incredibly rude to me from the very beginning. That’s how our rivalry got started. It’s not going to change with her attitude. She was very disrespectful on the show. I think that’s what she’s more worried because honestly, her true colors came out in that six weeks.”
Tate added that Rousey was very hard to work with for the show’s production staff, and was generally a pretty unpleasant person to be around.
“[Rousey]’s happy and laughing when she’s making jokes at someone else’s expense,” said Tate. “Other than that, she’s a pretty rude person.”
Those are some serious accusations Tate is throwing her rival’s way, but it seems like we’ll be getting to the bottom of things once the episodes begin airing in the fall. While it does seem like the two are at each other’s throats, it’s also very possible that both of these fighters are playing up their rivalry ahead of their upcoming rematch. Good drama goes a long way in terms of selling tickets after all.
In any case though, the pre-season hype for The Ultimate Fighter is getting pretty ridiculous. Frankly, if we don’t get to see some Ortiz/Shamrock-level fireworks, I’m going to be sorely disappointed.
The next season of The Ultimate Fighter will begin on September 4 on FOX Sports 1. Miesha Tate and Ronda Rousey will subsequently fight for the title at UFC 168 on December 28.